How To Get Your Garden Ready For And Maintain It During Winter
It is by no accident that we are known as the ‘Garden City’ and with these few easy tips, we’re going to make sure your garden the best in the street! With winter just around the corner, we want to help you to be prepared and then maintain your gardens grace throughout winter, so your garden can survive and then thrive in spring! You don’t have to have a green thumb to execute these tips or have any prior knowledge of gardening (yes, I am talking to you, Gen Y!). You’re in for a treat; let’s get started…
The first of our tips is about getting rid of the old and withered; unfortunately… they’re not going to make it.
- Clear all of your plant beds so there is no trace of any dead foliage, leaf litter or fallen branches and thoroughly weed the bed. This is going to prevent the spread of rot and stop any insect eggs from growing and spreading which can severely damage your plants.
- Cut away any dead stems from any of our plants. Again, this to prevent the spread of wood rot and insect breeding grounds.
- As you’re going through and culling any foreign objects, always check the health of the plants. As the first paragraph suggests, any of them that are looking beyond repair, it’s better to get rid of them now before needing to clear them in the coming weeks.
Important note: Don’t prune or cut blossoms at this stage. You don’t want to stimulate growth as you may cause them to die at the first frost.
Now that we have cleared the garden beds and the existing strong plants…
- Spread some compost around and till it into the soil.
- Lay a thick layer of mulch around all of your plants. This will protect them against the cold and help them thrive. The only thing you need to keep in mind when mulching is to make sure that you leave sufficient drainage for the plants. You know your garden best, so we will leave this to your discretion (you know where the water pools and which plant bases you need to keep dry).
- If you have plants that must be protected from frost and cold conditions you have two options:
– build light frames around them and every afternoon cover the frames with plastic or cloth to protect the plants from frost. Remove the covering first thing in the morning or the plants may overheat during the day.
Or, if you have tropical or subtropical potted plants in particular,
– bring them into a protected area or even indoors. If you are doing this, it will pay to reduce watering any potted plants in winter as they’ll need less moisture to survive.
Now we have prepared for the winter chill, let’s talk about maintaining the product of our hard work we have put into our preparation.
- Rake fallen leaves and add them to your compost pile.
- Check the moisture levels around the most moisture-prone areas in your garden weekly and check to see that your plant’s stems are looking healthy.
- Check the garden beds for any fallen foliage weekly.
- Keep an eye on the weather day by day. If there is a frost coming, you may need to cover more plants so they survive.
Do these 10 things and spring will be easy and the best you have had.
SAVE THE TREES!
If you have any young trees, you have to protect the softer trunks with tree protectors. This will keep them safe from any animals that might try to gnaw and damage them throughout winter.
TIME TO SHOW YOUR LAWN SOME LOVE TOO!
Your lawn will thrive throughout most of the year, but it will slow its growth during the winter months. Winter is also a critical season for your lawn’s overall health. To have a healthy looking lawn throughout winter we have to get it ready by giving it a little extra love in autumn.
- 2018 has been relatively dry so before winter is upon us, it may pay to aerate your lawn to loosen up the compacted soil and then water your lawn as needed leading up to winter. You can also spread gypsum to help break up subsoil clay if needed.
- Fertilising your lawn about once a month before the cold gets here will help keep it look nice and healthy during winter.
- Make sure the pH of the soil is at an optimal level of 6.5.
- Raise your lawnmower height. Longer blades of grass will help protect your lawn from frost and it will also improve photosynthesis, creating a healthier lawn during the winter months when there is less sunlight.
P.S. If you have a lot of lawn to cover you may have to hire a lawn aerator, or if it a smaller area you can use a pitchfork or walk around your lawn in shoes with spikes on the soles (this is the most comedic way to do it, so if you want to provide your friends and family with good laughs, this would be my recommendation). The important thing is to provide oxygen to the soil, compacted soil beneath the surface can suffocate your lawn.
I hope these simple tips help you get ready for and maintain your yard through winter so it can thrive in spring.
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